atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,

#777: Eco-nonsense, as usual

Germany wants eco-sanctions on the US.

Bring it, bitches. If you want to punish the US for not ratifying Kyoto or Bali, go right ahead. Because it's your consumers who will end up hurt by that policy in the end, when anything they buy that requires "energy-intensive" exports--anything made with steel or aluminum, for example--gets a hell of a lot more expensive.

Bali air conditioners filled with HCFCs. Oh, this is so good. A leaky system using a "potent greenhouse gas" which is also really bad for the ozone--

As you all know I don't really buy any of that. The "ozone hole" is a naturally-occuring, annual phenomenon which was first discovered in 1956--long before CFCs entered widespread use--explained, and forgotten about until the 1980s, when suddenly it was a crisis which meant we had to ban CFCs.

CFCs are heavy, stable molecules. That's why they were used as propellants in aerosols: many of them are essentially chemically inert. There are different kinds, of course, and they have different properties and are used according to what those properties are.

But none of that matters now, as the manufacture of CFCs has been banned since the 1980s. Now we have to use HFCs, which are less stable, less efficient, less safe, and more expensive than CFCs were. (R-134a, the refrigerant most commonly used in cars, can catch fire.) But, oh! they don't contain any nasty chlorine so they are ozone-friendly.

Fine, whatever.

I also don't buy the idea that infinitesimal changes in the composition of our atmosphere will change its heat-retention properties enough for us even to measure, much less notice. Each kilogram of HCFC might cause as much warming as 1.7 tons of carbon dioxide, but the annual carbon dioxide input to the atmosphere is two hundred and six million tons. do they even calculate that, I wonder? Or are they just comparing the specific heat capacities of carbon dioxide and HCFC? Because I can guaran-goddamned-tee you that the specific heat capacity of just about any complex molecule will be several orders of magnitude greater than that of carbon dioxide. Water's specific heat is greater, and it has the same number of atoms for crying out loud.

Comparing the specific heat of two molecules is not the same as comparing their ability to contain "greenhouse radiation".

Look: sunlight strikes the Earth. The Earth is warmed and radiates some infrared light. Some of the IR light is absorbed by various "greenhouse gases" in the atmosphere. The eco-nazi theory is that increasing the IR-absorbing gases in the atmosphere will increase the total heat retained by the atmosphere, thus causing global warming. Specifically, that adding more carbon dioxide to the atmosphere will do it.

As I said above, the world's annual "carbon budget" is about 206,000,000 tons. Of that, about 6,000,000 come from man-made sources. All of this serves to maintain an atmospheric carbon dioxide level of 0.78%. Over the past three hundred years, we are told, we have increased the amount of carbon dioxide in our atmosphere from 280 parts-per-million to 380 PPM--but no one has shown how we have done that; only that the rise in atmospheric carbon dioxide coincides with the beginning of the Industrial Revolution.

...which, coincidentally enough, coincides with the end of the Little Ice Age...and as the ice-core data shows, rises in carbon dioxide concentrations are always preceded by warming. So for all we know, the increased carbon dioxide could be the result of the end of the Little Ice Age!

So it's all bullshit. But the people at that luxurious retreat eco-conference believe that stuff like it came from some kind of Eco-greenie bible, so let's treat it as such for a moment:

Man, are those asshats hypocrites, or what?

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